Company Alphalist No Longer a Requirement for Korean Visa Applicants

The BIR Company Alphalist (or alpha list) is no longer a standard Korean visa requirement for Filipino employees. Find out more about the document below.

company-alphalist

Highlights

  • As of July 1, 2018, the Embassy of Korea in the Philippines no longer requires Filipino employees who are applying for a tourist visa to submit their company alphalist.
  • However, there are certain instances when the visa officer may still request for it.
  • Short for Company Alphabetical List, this document is an index of employees from whom taxes were withheld. This is a common attachment to the BIR Form 1604-CF.
  • If you’re planning a trip with colleagues or friends this year, make sure to book your group tours and activities with WAUG! Check out our handpicked activities in South Korea, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and more destinations here.

Explore more: How to Apply for a South Korea Visa: Requirements & Process in the Philippines

UPDATE: June 13, 2020


Who can I apply for a Korean visa? To prevent the spread of COVID-19, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea in the Philippines currently only accepts applications for long-term visas. Tourist visa processing (C-3) is still on hold pending the easing of travel restrictions in the Philippines.

What are the enhanced visa criteria? Those who are eligible to apply for a Korean visa must comply to these requirements and mandatory quarantine. Moreover, successful applicants will no longer be issued a visa sticker in their passport beginning July 1. Upon arrival in South Korea, they must present a printed copy of their visa grant notice instead.

What if I have a valid Korean visa? Single-entry Korean visas that were issued on or before April 5, 2020 are no longer valid. You will need to apply for a new one. However, if you have a valid short-term multiple-entry Korean visa (5 years), you do not have to reapply. Conditions permitting, it can still be used in the future. For reference, you can read the Embassy’s detailed explanation here

What is the Company Alphalist?

The Company Alphabetical List or alphalist is a detailed record of an organization’s employees and the taxes withheld from them. It contains information such as the employee’s full name, TIN, salary information, deductions, and other details. It is commonly attached to the BIR Form 1604-CF or the ‘Annual Information Return of Income Taxes Withheld on Compensation and Final Withholding Taxes’ that must be submitted on or before the January 31 deadline of each year.

Here’s how the company alphalist looks like:

company-alpha-list-bir
Credit: Memoentry

Here’s a sample BIR Form 1604-CF, which is a return filed by employers who are mandated to deduct or withhold taxes from their employees:

bir-form-1604-cf-stamped

Is the Company Alphalist required for Korean visa applicants?

It depends. While the Embassy of Korea in Manila removed the Company Alphalist as part of the standard requirement for employees, it can still be requested by the visa officer in some cases, especially if you are a first-time traveler. It will most likely be used to know more about your employment, income, and ties in the country. 

Should you be asked to submit your company alphalist, here are some tips that we have for you:

  • Ask your Human Resources if they are able to provide you a copy of your company alphalist.
  • If you’re able to secure it, note that the BIR Form 1604-CF should be stamped by BIR.
  • You may choose to hide some personal information, such as your TIN. Also make sure that only your details are shown.
  • If your employer is unwilling to give you a copy of the company alphalist (businesses tend to be unwilling to release this kind of document to protect their employees’ information), you may write the Embassy a letter of explanation (or ask someone from your Human Resources) to state this reason.

If you are self-employed, do note that you are only required to submit the BIR Form 1604-CF with receipt.

But don’t get stressed!

While reading this article may have you think that you’ll most likely be asked to submit the company alphalist, don’t stress. Just prepare the standard set of Korean visa requirements and you should be good to go. However, in case you’re prompted to submit this document and are really unable to do so, you can always write a letter to the Embassy.

Finally, if you’re already planning your trip to Seoul, Busan, or Jeju, make sure to download the WAUG app on your phone so you can check out these activities that are popular among locals!

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